Aftermath Analysis: Climate change sea-level rises could increase risk for more devastating tsunamis worldwide, according to Virginia Tech expert


Expert Pitch

(October 2, 2018) -- As sea levels rise due to climate change, so do the global hazards and potential devastating damages from tsunamis, according to a new study by a partnership that included Virginia Tech.

Virginia Tech’s Robert Weiss is available to discuss his research into climate change and tsunamis, as it impacted Friday’s 7.5 magnitude earthquake and subsequent disaster in parts of Indonesia. 

Weiss serves as director of the National Science Foundation-funded Disaster Resilience and Risk Management graduate education program and is co-lead of Coastal@VT, composed of 45 Virginia Tech faculty from 13 departments focusing on contemporary and emerging coastal zone issues, such as disaster resilience, migration, sensitive ecosystems, hazard assessment, and natural infrastructure.

“Our research shows that sea-level rise can significantly increase the tsunami hazard, which means that smaller tsunamis in the future can have the same adverse impacts as big tsunamis would today,” Weiss said, adding that smaller tsunamis generated by earthquakes with smaller magnitudes occur frequently and regularly around the world.

To secure a live or recorded video interview with Robert Weiss from the Virginia Tech campus, contact Bill Foy by email, or by phone at 540-998-0288.

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